What’s the Protocol Here?

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“Dear PoPville,

I reported this to 311, but wanted to send to you in case you could get the word out. This pic was taken at 9:30 AM on Thomas St. NW. Haven’t received a response from 311 yet.”

30 Comment

  • Further context for those viewing on their phones: DDOT placed excess snow into a handicapped space.

  • On a more general note, from what I’ve seen, DC government doesn’t care very much about pedestrians (or bus users for that matter); cars are its priority. Not enforcing the sidewalk clearing law (especially wrt commercial enterprises) is just insane. I also note that the U.S. Parks Service has been awful (as always) for properties they’re responsible for (for example, the mess on the west side of Wisconsin at Tenley Circle) — they can clear monuments for the tourists, but not some sidewalks used every day by hundreds of DC residents who have to go about their business? Inexcusable.

    • We’ve been lamenting the car priority and lack of pedestrian priority all week. It really is a problem.

    • Just curious – who enforces the sidewalk shoveling? DDOT/parking people?

    • Did they clear tourist areas? I had to walk through the park by the White House as part of my commute this morning because PA Ave was closed for a motorcade and it was not clear at all.

    • Agree. All of the corners that were dug out yesterday for pedestrian are now covered with snow. Neighbors helped my mother dig out and opened a space behind her to get out and snow plows pushed snow from a side street and stacked a wall foot high along the side of her car (nest).

    • The first goal of clearing the snow is about making sure emergency vehicles can move around the city. That’s why roads and cars are the priority. I am glad because if my house is on fire, there is no way any pedestrian can save it. Or if I have a heart attack, I’ll need an ambulance.

      This isn’t always about people’s preferred mode of transportation, this is about safety.

      • Yes, roads need to be cleared, but when all that snow stays dumped on sidewalks and corners, with no concern for pedestrians, and the city lets sidewalks remain unshoveled in blatant violation of the law, THAT’S a big problem.

        • It’s being cleared as we speak. I’ve seen front loaders and dump trucks all over 16th St and Connecticut, trucking the enormous piles of snow away. This was not a storm that would get cleaned up right away.

        • There’s a lot of snow. It has to go somewhere. Snow melts. It will all be OK.

          I shoveled two intersections in our neighborhood. Two days later front-end loaders clearing the roads undid all my work. I shoveled the intersections again.

          Sure snow being redeposited on previously cleared sidewalks is annoying. But it also is an opportunity to stay fit without joining a gym.

      • +1. Reading the comments here you would think that most the city would be better off without roads.

      • No one is disputing that emergency vehicles get preference. However, those vehicles can move just fine once there’s a lane clear. What many people are complaining about is DDOT clearing every square inch of car lanes, repeatedly shoving the excess snow into crosswalks. Beyond doing nothing for walking, they are actively making it much more difficult to walk. Emergency vehicles have been able to move ok for days, but I have shoveled the crosswalks near my house multiple times because the plows keep dumping more and more snow there, and my pregnant wife keeps nearly slipping on the snow mountains that they are creating. This is not ok.

  • We’ve been lamenting the car priority and lack of pedestrian priority FOR 30 YEARS. It really is a problem.

    FTFY

    • We’ve been whining about the car priority and lack of pedestrian priority FOR 30 YEARS. It really is a problem.
      FTFY

  • I would think the protocol would be (assuming you are the neighbor of the person whose reserved space this is) would be to offer a space you had cleared out to your neighbor who has a disability and move your car elsewhere. Or at least speak to them and ask them if they need a place to park their car. One of my neighbors with a handicap spot garaged their car at DCUSA for the duration of the storm so as to not require digging out.

    • I thought the OP’s implicit question was whether it was protocol for DDOT to deposit plowed snow into handicapped spaces. Upon re-reading, though, I’m not sure whether it was the OP or PoP who was asking what the protocol was.

      • from the picture it’s obvious that the city didn’t “dump snow” in that spot. it was vacant during the storm, the city plowed, and the people on either side of this spot dumped snow in it while they were clearing their own cars.
        the obvious right answer here is to get out your shovel and help clear this spot for your handicapped neighbor.

      • Maybe it was? I guess I don’t understand the question. I would highly doubt the protocol for plowing is: find empty handicap spaces and plow all snow into them!

  • To the OP if the resident that uses the spot needs access I would suggest contacting your Council member’s office and asking them what they recommend. Second call DC Serve and see if there are any snow team volunteers who could come dig out the spot.

  • Yes- I saw many instances in my NE neighborhood where the street plows blocked crosswalks and ramps with piles of snow. At some point maybe people just need to take their own shovel, go to the corner, and clear a path through the closest intersection to their house. Sucks that the city can’t do this, but as we have seen, for whatever reasons, they can not.

  • Hey! I’m your neighbor at 138. I’ll be home tonight, and if you’d like me to help dig out your spot, I have time. Just knock on my door.

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